Thursday, May 27, 2010

Sins of the Mother by Victoria Christopher Murray

Have the sins of the mother come upon the daughter?
Jasmine Larson Bush is finally living a drama-free life. She’s left her lying, cheating, stealing stripper days behind and is standing by her husband’s side as the first lady of one of the largest churches in New York City. The Bushes have been blessed with the best of everything—including two lovely children.
But just when Jasmine has committed her life completely to God, her daughter Jacqueline is kidnapped from a mall the day after Thanksgiving. The police and the church community join in the frantic search to find the four-year-old. As the days pass without any sign of her daughter, Jasmine begins to crack under the strain and turns to Brian Lewis, Jacqueline’s biological father, for solace.
Has Jasmine’s past finally caught up to her? Will her daughter be found or will Jasmine pay the ultimate price?
My Review – Murray’s Most Ambitious Work Yet.
Has Jasmine’s past finally caught up with her? Readers of the prior books in the series almost can’t help but hope so. Jasmine has been so horrible and so conniving for so many years that even the most forgiving reader would certainly expect the seeds Jasmine has planted to produce a bitter harvest. But just when you think it’s time for her to pay, Victoria Christopher Murray delivers a story that leaves no room for anything but compassion; even for an anti-hero like Jasmine Larson Bush.  Why are we going to have to relent? Because we meet Jasmine the mother when we lose Jacqueline, the helpless four-year-old;  the combination of which make for a gripping, gut wrenching story that will literally have readers praying as they turn the pages. There’s no room for anything else.
This novel is without question Victoria Christopher Murray’s best work. A departure from what we’ve seen in the last few years, Sins of the Mother, is what I would almost call a psychological drama. Murray weaves conflict upon conflict into a mind bending story that emotionally draws the reader in beyond what you expect from a woman’s fiction tale. The difference in delivery makes it an absolute stand alone read for those who haven’t met this cast of characters before.
I have to admit, I have a four-year-old child myself and I had a hard time with this novel. Child abductions are tough stuff. But please don’t let the subject matter scare you. There are scenes that are so spiritually uplifting that they will literally raise chill bumps; this too was a deeper layer for Ms. Murray. While true to her brand of edgy, inspirational fiction, Sins of the Mother is a character study and journey of faith. As a lover of Christian fiction, I was pleased. Fans be not deceived, Murray’s ability to satisfy all is not mocked. This book is sexy with a capital “S”. Brian Lewis is back and when Brian is on the scene, we can expect nothing less than heat between the sheets. Murray fans will have to read the story to find out whose fire he’s putting out.  My reviewer lips are sealed.
I’ll close by saying I highly recommend this novel. What I appreciated most about Sins of the Mother was Ms. Murray’s ability to deliver realism without abandoning hope. The characters covered the full spectrum of believable reaction. Some kept their feet planted firmly in the reality of faith, others struggled with their faith amidst the reality of humanness, but in the end, Murray reconciles all; most brilliantly. 
Reviewed by Rhonda McKnight
An Advance Copy of this book was provided by the publisher.
To read an excerpt and learn more about the author, visit her website at  

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